Pope warns ‘Italian bishops not to accept gay applicants to the priesthood’

catholic school refuses to fire gay teacher

Pope Francis has apparently warned bishops in Italy to reject any applicants to the priesthood who they suspect might be gay.

“Keep an eye on the admissions to seminaries, keep your eyes open,” the pope is reported to have said, according to the newspaper La Stampa’s Vatican Insider service.

“If in doubt, better not let them enter.”

The comments were reportedly made at a private meeting on Monday.

The Vatican has not yet responded to a request for comment.

The news comes after Pope Francis reportedly told a gay man that “God made you like this” – a comment believed by many to be a sign of acceptance of LGBT+ people by the leader of the Roman Catholic church.

Pope Francis has been seen as more accepting of LGBT+ people (Photo by Buda Mendes/Getty Images)

Juan Carlos Cruz, a survivor of clerical sexual abuse, said he had spoken to the pope about his homosexuality during recent meetings at the Vatican.

Pope Francis had invited Cruz and other survivors of clerical abuse to discuss their cases in April.

“He told me, ‘Juan Carlos, that you are gay does not matter. God made you like this and loves you like this and I don’t care,” Cruz told Spanish newspaper El Pais.

“The pope loves you like this. You have to be happy with who you are’.”

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